The Arizona Legislature passed a bill that would make it legal for a business to deny service to homosexuals, just so long as the business can cite a religious reason for doing so.(Update: Arizona Governor Jan Brewer vetoed the bill Feb 26, 2014 .)
This bill defends a gross immorality, and it doesn’t go far enough in doing so.
First, the gross immorality: Homosexuality isn’t a sin and it’s wrong to penalize gays and lesbians for their sexuality. So what this law would make legal, no one ought to do.
But the issue here is the right of people to deal with each other by trade. And as far freedom to trade goes, the bill doesn’t go far enough.
No business person should be forced to deal with any client.
Somehow, in the twentieth century, America segued from blue laws to anti-discrimination laws without missing a beat. In Arizona, they’ve gone from banning homosexuality (because it was considered immoral) to banning anti-gay business practices (because those are now considered immoral). But the government doesn’t exist to ban immoral acts. It exists to protect our individual rights . It exists to ban the initiation of force .
No business person should be forced to deal with any client he doesn’t choose to serve. And no client should be forced into a business deal it doesn’t want. And one shouldn’t have to cite a religious reason for denying service to a potential customer. A business should be free to act for whatever reason it chooses. Objective, non-religious reasons should always be permitted. So the new bill is just a half-step back towards freedom, at best. And Arizona’s continuing ban of gay marriage is a disgrace and a shame .
Government should stay out of our love life and our business life.
Homosexuals have the right to love whom they choose. The advocates of gay rights recognize that the government should stay out of people’s love lives. But for just the same reason, the government should stay out of our business life, too. We have the right to deal with whom we choose, whether we’re dealing kisses or wedding cake.